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Bags & Bags – Johannesburg, South Africa

Reblogged from: Bags & Bags – Johannesburg, South Africa – DanVenture Travels

Earlier in the year, I wrote about flying home for the first time in a while. I wanted to share an experience I had on my way back & give some advice to help you avoid being in the same situation.

After having 2 weeks at home, it was time for me to go back. I packed my bags & kept valuables in my hand luggage & other items in my checked-in bags – as best as I could. I weighed the checked-in bags & I was underweight – Perfect! I headed to the airport.

Checking in for an international flight is not as quick as it used to be so it took a while for all my documents to be checked & finally my bags were looked at. I know this happens often, but it has been years since my hand luggage has been weighed so I have developed a habit of stuffing as much as possible into the poor bag. It weighed 12kgs & the airline allowed 7kgs. The gentleman working at the check-in counter asked me to remove some stuff & place it in the checked-in bags. I happily complied. Some of the stuff I removed were sweets & treats (Important info for later). I would strongly advise you to follow your airline’s baggage weight restrictions & this is something I will be taking a lot more seriously from now on.

I said goodbye to my parents & then boarded my flight. Everything went smoothly from then onwards, the flight was great & the arrival procedure was so much easier than I expected. I was on this wonderful travel high… and then I got to the baggage belt.

I knew something was wrong when I saw the front compartment on my one bag was open; I never leave that open. So I take my bags off the belt & notice that both have had their locks & zips cut open. I reported this to the airline & then I went to my apartment to see what had actually been stolen. I lost 2 pairs of shoes, fragrances, biltong & those sweets & treats I mentioned earlier. This isn’t the first time this has happened to me flying out of Johannesburg & I am quite certain it happens to dozens of people daily just at that airport. Having said that, I don’t promote negativity & DanVenture Travels is not intended to incite anger. It did happen though & unfortunately, it is a risk you take when traveling by air.

The first thing I would recommend regarding this is making sure there are no valuables or important/sensitive documents in your checked-in bags. Secondly, get your bags wrapped. Most airports offer plastic/saran wrapping for bags, but it can be quite pricey so perhaps buy the plastic at a supermarket & do it yourself.

I sincerely hope this never happens to you & wish you the best of the travel experience.

Use #DanVentureTravels on your Instagram posts so I can follow your adventures. Follow the DanVenture Travels Facebook page for other travel content.

Keep traveling, keep safe.
DanVenture Travels

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Even More Kilometers & Kilometres – Across The Globe – DanVenture Travels

Dans Wing (2)

I have just passed my 2 millionth kilometer traveled by air. That distance is just over 50 times around the globe & is equivalent to roughly 118 full days of flying. A pretty long time spent in economy. The flights I’ve taken span 107 airports in 67 different countries. Here’s to another million. I’ve included a map of all the flights I’ve taken for visual reference.

When I hit the 1 million kilometer milestone, I posted an update. A lot has changed with regards to air travel since that post. We saw a global standstill. We saw airlines focus on hygiene and cleanliness. Quarantine & air travel went hand in hand. We saw masks and other face coverings become mandatory for flying. We saw PCR tests/rapid antigen tests become a requirement to enter almost every country. Airport lounges were closed & duty free stores were shuttered. Airlines drastically reduced service on board.

It is safe to say, almost everything changed.

Although there have been numerous negatives to the changes that have taken place, perhaps there are some positives. Going forward towards the next million, I would like to see physical distancing being kept at airports. I would like all airlines to keep hygiene and cleanliness a priority. I would like to see continued use of personal protective equipment by airline & airport employees. I would like to see cheaper PCR/rapid antigen tests. I would like to see duty free stores & airport restaurants open again. Lastly, I would love to see people using aircraft lavatories with shoes on – seriously, that is the last place you want to be barefoot.

Until the next post. Like the DanVenture Travels Facebook page & use #DanVentureTravels on your Instagram posts so I can follow your adventures.

Keep traveling, keep safe.

DanVenture Travels

I was unable to reblog from Dan’s site, if you wish to see the original, follow this link: https://danventuretravels.com/2021/07/23/even-more-kilometers-kilometres-across-the-globe/

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I Had A Dream……

Dan The Aviation Man 2

I stood in a fitting room, getting measured for my uniform. My uniform, the royal charcoal & burgundy of the prestigious Qatar Airways.

Qatar Airways, an airline which has either been best or second best airline of the year for the last eight years. I can’t seem to grasp the fact that I am an employee of one of the leaders in the industry.

How did I end up here? To answer that question, I have to take you back a few years, so you will understand where my passion for aviation came from.

Sunderland J (2)
Sunderland ‘J’ Piloted by my Grandfather

My paternal grandfather passed away before I was born and as a result, I never had the opportunity to get to know him. He was a pilot during the great war. I remember spending hours looking at pictures of him in uniform while my grandmother told me about him and his flying years. I loved hearing about the people he met and the places he went. I can’t confidently say how or why this passion began, but I can definitely say, it was intense, consuming and, up until today, an integral part of whom I am.

Over the years, I spent hours reading about the industry, researching airports and learning about aircraft. If anyone was going to the airport, I was sure to be with them. If I knew about an air show happening, I would beg someone to take me. Any time I could incorporate aviation into school projects, I most certainly did.

When the time came for me to finish school and choose a career, aviation was an obvious choice. I just didn’t know which area of aviation exactly. The opportunity to go into avionics presented itself and I was thrilled to be starting my life in aviation. I spent the next three years completing my theoretical modules and doing long practical’s at various airports. Although I was in an industry I loved, this was a time of immense emotional hardship and I struggled through, but I made it; I qualified.

I began searching for jobs locally and then internationally. I was young, passionate and fully qualified, but very few companies got back to me. I can’t remember how many avionics related jobs I applied for, but it was very disheartening to not receive even a single call back.

I saw an advert on Face book for cabin crew with Qatar Airways. They were hosting an open day event in South Africa and I thought that dropping off my documents and saying hello wouldn’t hurt. I didn’t expect to have anything come from it, so I didn’t prepare to stay for any length of time. I got ready in business attire and went to the hotel hosting the open day. I was early, but other applicants started arriving and soon there were close on 600 people. I had long given up hope for this possibility.

Dan The Aviation Man
I Love this Space

Much to my surprise, I was asked to come back the following day. I passed the next round, the next and the next.

Fast forward a few months of jumping through hoops for the airline and there I was, my bags packed with a one-way ticket to Qatar.

I never expected this for my life; for a long time, I thought I would either work on the technical side of aviation or not in aviation at all. I also can’t explain how it happened that my first call back was the only job I applied for outside of avionics.

I find peace in accepting that this was just meant to be and as surprising as it was, I am happier than I have ever been.

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